University of Southern California
Describe a quality that makes you unique.
My life is filled with hantai, or opposites: potatoes and rice, forks and chopsticks, Bachan and Nana, and an English first name and a Japanese last name. When I was younger, it never occurred to me that I was any different than any of my classmates because I ate rice every night instead of potatoes, that I knew how to use chopsticks and ate with a fork, that I had two different names for my grandmothers, or that my last name was a little unusual. However, I had always known there was something different about my family, but it never really troubled me. I had noticed that my father didn't look like my friends' fathers and my classmates' mothers were never taller than their fathers like in my family. I never realized how culturally different I was from my friends until much later. My mother was born and raised in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada and met my father at the University of Chicago when they were both pursing careers in the field of medicine. My mother came from very humble beginnings as neither of her parents had graduated from high school. After the death of her father when she was only twelve and her experience as an only child, she was inspirationally self-motivated, ultimately obtaining both an M.D. and a PhD....
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